My training cycle went well. I felt really good about this race going into. I did until Friday anyway, but I'll get to that in a minute.
2 guys from the CA forum on Runner's World offered to run with me since they had similar goals of running under 1:40. Very sweet of them and I took them up on it. It lasted about 5 miles. I just did not have it today. My legs felt heavy, I tried to rally and it just wasn't happening. Actually, it really went down hill after 10k (I was pretty on pace until that point). I phoned it around mile 7 and just ran to finish. Not like I could have run any faster if I wanted to. I finished in 1:44:01. No, it's not a bad time. Yes it's way off my goal. I can deal with that. I'll pick another race and give it another shot.
I know what's partially responsible for my poor run today, though as I was running I told myself I was not going to use this as an excuse.
As I was getting ready to leave the house on Friday morning, I was reading Facebook when some horrible news came across my feed. Yes, this is how we find things out these days. My old friend from my HS days posted that his sister, someone I was also friends with and who I went to HS with, passed away while giving birth. Her son also did not make it.
This news is beyond horrifying and I instantly burst into tears.
Even now...it's totally surreal. The last few days have been a sea of sorrow and reconnecting with people from the past.
My high school experience was not the best. I very much looked forward to the day when it would be over. I had a great extended group of freakish friends from out side of school, a very John Hughesesque group of kids. Gia and her brother were both a big part of that crowd. Going to see Rocky Horror, trips into Philly for all age punk shows, and nights dancing at Revival. Scott is a year older than me and went to a different school, Gia a year younger. It was great to have Gia at school during the day, an ally in otherness.
We had kept in touch over the years, though college and when she came to NYC for grad school we'd hang out.
Like most people these days, we had connected again on Facebook. It was great to be back in touch, see how her family had grown to include her husband Charlie and their twin boys, Charlie and Nate.
She was so excited about being pregnant again and sharing all the changes and how her boys were adjusting to a new one coming along. I was excited for her and looked forward to her updates. She was always supportive of my adventures.
As I was running today, my mantra became "sorrow into strength" but honesly, there was none of that. I haven't slept well the last few nights. My mind is constantly thinking about this huge loss.
I'm sure I could go on and on but I'm not going to, there just aren't the right words for this.
Gia was an amazing person. Smart and beautiful and full of talent. The loss is immense for all those who knew her and most certainly for her family.
If you're the praying type, please keep her husband, her boys, her brother and mom in your prayers. If you're not the praying type, please keep them in your thoughts.